Load NSImage into QPixmap or QImage

I have an NSImage pointer from a platform SDK, and I need to load it into Qt's QImage class. To make things easier, I can create a QImage from a CGImageRef by using QPixmap as an intermediate format, like this:

CGImageRef myImage = // ... get a CGImageRef somehow.
QImage img = QPixmap::fromMacCGImageRef(myImage).toImage();

However, I cannot find a way to convert from an NSImage to a CGImageRef. Several other people have had the same problem, but I have yet to find a solution.

There is the CGImageForProposedRect method, but I can't seem to get it to work. I'm currently trying this (img is my NSImage ptr):

CGImageRef ir = [img CGImageFirProposedRect:0:0:0];

Any ideas?


NSImage is a high level image wrapper that might contain more than one image (thumbnails, different resolutions, vector representations, ...) and does a lot of caching magic. A CGImage on the other hand is one plain bitmap image. Since NSImage is a so much richer object, there’s no easy way of converting in between the two.

To get a CGImageRef from an NSImage you have some options:

  1. Manually select an NSBitmapImageRep from the NSImage (using [img representations]) and get the CGImage from that.
  2. Setup a graphics context (CGBitmapContextCreate), draw the image into that, and create a CGImage from this context.
  3. Use the new Snow Leopard API to create the CGImage directly from the NSImage: [img CGImageForProposedRect:NULL context:nil hints:nil]

// Sample to create 16x16 QPixmap with alpha channel using Cocoa

const int width = 16;
const int height = 16;

NSBitmapImageRep * bmp = [[NSBitmapImageRep alloc]

  [NSGraphicsContext saveGraphicsState];

  [NSGraphicsContext setCurrentContext:[NSGraphicsContext graphicsContextWithBitmapImageRep:bmp]];

  // assume NSImage nsimage
  [nsimage drawInRect:NSMakeRect(0,0,width,height) fromRect:NSZeroRect operation: NSCompositeSourceOver fraction: 1];

  [NSGraphicsContext restoreGraphicsState];

  QPixmap qpixmap = QPixmap::fromMacCGImageRef([bmp CGImage]);

  [bmp release];

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